Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 IV Review

August 24, 2015 | Amy Davies |

Review Roundup

Reviews of the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 IV from around the web. »

Sony rejuvenated the premium compact market in 2012 when it introduced the Cyber-shot DSC-RX100. The RX100 took a 1"-type sensor and relatively fast zoom lens and put it into a body that can slip into your pocket. Every year since has seen the arrival of a new RX100 model. The RX100 II added a new BSI CMOS sensor and hot shoe. Last year's RX100 III lost the hot shoe but gained a faster (but shorter) lens and clever pop-up EVF. The latest model inherits all of those things but adds a new stacked CMOS sensor that, according to Sony, is literally years ahead of the competition.
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The Sony Cyber-shot RX100 IV (M4) is less of an clear upgraade over its predecessor the RX100 III (M3) than a forked alternative; for a variety of reasons, I'd classify it as an advanced compact for video enthusiasts rather than a straight-up advanced compact, at least until the price drops a bit. Though it's more expensive and adds a plethora of video capabilities, it's pretty much delivers the same photo quality in the same body.
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Sony has updated its RX100 model every year, and with every update the price has inched higher. The latest model, the Cyber-shot RX100 IV ($949.99), is dangerously close to the $1,000 price point, a pretty extreme figure for a pocket-friendly compact camera. It doesn't offer any improvements in image quality when compared with the RX100 III, but its pop-up viewfinder is sharper and its video capabilities are vastly improved. We're sticking with the RX100 III as our Editors' Choice for premium compacts—but if you don't mind the price tag, and video recording is a priority, you may find the RX100 IV to be a better fit.
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Back in 2012 Sony redefined expectations for small cameras by fitting a large, high resolution 20.1-million-pixel 1-in sensor into the pocket-sized RX100. Every year since then, it has taken its advanced point-and-shoot compact and improved it for the better. The arrival of the RX100 II back in 2013 was a step up from the original RX100 and introduced a new backside illuminated CMOS sensor, tiltable LCD screen and Wi-fi connectivity.
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